News

Twelve new rail destinations for more efficient North Sea Port connections to the European hinterland

Published on Fri 4 Oct 2019
North Sea Port and Lineas are joining forces to increase efficiency with 12 new rail connections to the European hinterland. This is a significant expansion of the volume of rail transport from the port.

A new rail connection between Interface Terminal Ghent and the Lineas Main Hub in Antwerp allows goods to be shipped via the international rail network of Lineas. The 12 new destinations are Madrid, Granollers (Barcelona) and Tarragona (Spain), Hendaye (France), Schkopau (Germany), Lovosice (Czech Republic), Curtici (Romania), Malmö (Sweden), Milan (Italy), Wels and Vienna (Austria), and Basel (Switzerland). Parts of these rail connections are supported by the Flemish Department of Mobility and Public Works as well as North Sea Port.

Interface Terminal Ghent Kluizendok

Goods are unloaded and loaded at the Interface Terminal Ghent at the Kluizendok. This unique 4-modal container terminal (sea shipping, inland shipping, rail and road transport) has 750-meter triple rail lines to receive trains. Trains then travel to Antwerp, where they connect to the Lineas European rail network. A number of logistics and distribution companies operate in the area of the terminal and the Kluizendok. Interface Terminal Ghent also has a short-sea connection to the United Kingdom: I-Motion Shipping sails to Hull three times a week.

“For many companies these 12 extra destinations offer opportunities to transport goods to the hinterland by rail. Many quays and business parks in North Sea Port include rail tracks and track bundles,” says Daan Schalck, North Sea Port CEO. Currently, some 7.7 million tons of goods are brought in and out of North Sea Port by rail each year. This accounts for nearly 10% of transport to and from the hinterland. “It is our aim to further increase rail transport. These 12 new destinations are a good contribution.”

“We are proud to be a strategic partner of a thriving port company that is increasingly focusing on rail development,” says Sam Bruynseels, CCO of Lineas. “The connection between Ghent and Antwerp provides an opportunity for companies to transfer more volumes by rail to the European hinterland every day via our Green Xpress Network. It is our intention to increase the frequency in the coming period, so that in the long term we can establish direct connections between Ghent and European destinations.”

Multimodal port

Multimodality is one of the most important assets that North Sea Port offers companies to set up business in the cross-border port area. Its strategic location on the North Sea up to 32 kilometres inland, makes the port accessible via rail and via coastal shipping, sea shipping, inland shipping, pipeline and by road. This means that North Sea Port is always looking for new destinations in the hinterland.